Masisi and Serame cannot deny or confirm uncle-niece relations
Is the newly appointed Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Peggy Serame President Mokgweetsi Masisi’s niece?
Is the president’s blue-eyed girl the biological daughter of Masisi’s late older brother, Tshelang Masisi who was a Member of Parliament for Francistown West for many years until he died in 2013?
Serame’s (51) close relations to President Masisi were once questioned in parliament by the leader of Opposition, Dumelang Saleshando soon after she was appointed Specially Elected Member of Parliament. Since then, the swirling rumours that the two were uncle and niece have refused to go away.
This week both President Masisi and Serame could not confirm or deny whether they are related or not.
Responding to a questionnaire from The Voice on the matter, Press Secretary to the President, Batlhalefi Leagajang highlighted that no law precludes the President from appointing a relation to Cabinet.
“If your memory serves you well you may recall that since Independence we have had instances where a President appointed a sibling or a cousin to Cabinet.
Without appearing to confirm or deny your allegations it is important to advise you that Ministers are generally drawn from people elected to Parliament either through direct election or Special Nomination. Therefore, every Member of Parliament has the right to serve if appointed,” said Leagajang in a statement.
He also reminded this publication that Serame would be in a better position to answer questions on her paternity than the office of the President.
However, Information reaching this publication has indicated that Serame is the biological daughter of the President’s late brother Tshelang Walter (TW) Masisi.
TW as he was affectionately known, especially in Francistown died at the age of 62 in 2013 after suffering a stroke.
In an interview with The Voice, one of the Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) veteran politicians who was a close friend of Masisi has confirmed that Serame is indeed Tshelang’s daughter.
The politician who preferred not to be named for fear of victimization said he has all along known that Serame is Tshelang’s first child that he had when he was a teenager at the age of 19.
“He had Peggy before he was married to his first wife. He told me this when he was still married to his South African wife but I am not sure if he had declared and introduced her to his second wife.” Said the source.
Tshelang and his South African wife had two children before he divorced and married a local woman.
The source further went on to reveal that Peggy has always been close to his uncle, the president and it was therefore not surprising to hear that he could be planning to elevate her to the position of Vice President before the 2024 general elections.
“Masisi does not trust a lot of people working with him right now. That is why he wants to surround himself with family and those that are loyal to him,” he added.
For her part, Serame simply acknowledged the questionnaire sent to her two weeks ago to confirm or deny these allegations and did not respond.
Meanwhile, the minister’s mother lost her temper when asked to clarify the issue of Peggy’s Partenity“ and accused “young reporters” of “insulting her.
“Kgang ya lona lea nthoga ka Setswana. Ke le bolelela boammaruri hela eseng sepe gape, lea nthoga. ga le ntshabe hela gotla go botsa Mma Serame dikgang tseo.” is all she could say before throwing the reporters out.